Finding Dry January a little tough? Shift your mind set from dinner and drinks to London’s wealth of fun activities, from fun fitness to spa trips, alcohol-free bars and oodles of ways to kidult…
1 Get Free Money with Abokado
To help banish the New Year blues, Abokado, London’s health-focused destination for fresh, feel-great food, is giving Londoners the opportunity to take part in a city-wide treasure hunt as it hides £20,000 across the capital throughout January. On a mission to make London Feel Great during this typically gloomy time of year, Abokado is proving that there really is such a thing as a free lunch (or breakfast) by giving away free money to spend at any of its 28 outlets. From 9-20 January 2017, thousands of Bank of Abokado notes, in denominations of £3, will be distributed and hidden around the city for Londoners to discover throughout their day, whether they’re on the morning commute or checking out a famous landmark. Keen for clues? Take a look at the Abokado social media feeds. Each note can be used for any food or drink purchase from Abokado until 28 February 2017.
2 Quit adulting and start kidulting
Adulting is hard, especially in a non-stop, high-pressure capital city like London, so it’s no wonder that ‘kidult’ activities are on the rise. Forget about that Monday morning meeting and dive into a giant ball pit, have a boozy sleepover in a museum or play your favourite board games in a bar. Here, The Resident seeks out London’s best activities for those who have decided they don’t want to grow up…
3 The Seedlip Terrace at Harvey Nichols
Seedlip, the world’s first distilled non-alcoholic spirits brand, is to takeover the Harvey Nichols Fifth Floor Terrace from Monday 9 January until Sunday 5 February 2017. The exclusive terrace will be transformed into an immersive Seedlip space designed by Kit & Caboodle, complete with copper piping, garden design features and contemporary foliage inspired by Seedlip’s dedication to celebrating nature and pioneering what to drink when you’re not drinking with their distilled non-alcoholic spirits. A special selection of non-alcoholic Seedlip cocktails, including a range of Sours, Martinis and Hot Toddies will be available alongside a host of light-bites. Open Monday-Saturday 8am-11pm and Sunday 11am-6pm.
Harvey Nichols Fifth Floor Terrace, 109-125 Knightsbridge, Belgravia SW1X 7RU; harveynichols.com
4 Seedlip’s sober takeover of The Bloomsbury Club Bar
Seedlip is also planning a Dry January takeover at The Bloomsbury Club Bar. Running from Friday 13 January until Sunday 15 January, guests of the hotel and visitors alike will be welcomed into an enchanting, Seedlip-inspired space within the beautiful Bloomsbury Club Bar. Enjoy the Dry January cocktail menu, representing a twist on much-loved classics with the likes of the Espreseedlip Martini and the signature Seedlip & Tonic – all paired with a selection of bespoke club bites such as Seedlip Garden Cured Salmon and Scallop Ceviche. Open 4pm until late.
The Bloomsbury Club Bar, 16-22 Great Russell Street, WC1B 3NN; doylecollection.com
The Wright Brothers want to help you tick some foodie needs off your bucket list in 2017, so have kicked off the year with oyster master classes and a new takeaway option from the South Kensington restaurant. With 9g of protein per 100g and nearly half the calories of an equal serving of chicken, oysters are a great start to new year the healthy way.
6 Enjoy a sober disco
Just because you don’t want to have any of the strong stuff doesn’t mean you can’t get out to the disco of a Friday evening. This time, however, it’s a healthy disco with Clubbercise offering fun, easy-to-follow dance regimes. Whilst you give up the drink, Clubbercise help those who need it most – their partnership with Oxfam means that every time a new instructor joins, 10 people are supplied with clean drinking water. Find classes at Fire Nightclub in Vauxhall on Thursdays, from 6.45pm-7.30pm, at the Pineapple Dance Studios Pop-up (check here for details of the next party), at Studio K in Richmond on Tuesdays from 8.30-9.30pm and more venues.
7 Booze-free bars
If you still fancy the hubbub of the bars on a weekend but would like somewhere away from temptation, Redemption Bar’s two sites in Notting Hill and Shoreditch are the best places to seek out. It is arguably one of London’s healthiest restaurants, serving up vegan, sugar-free, and wheat-free food with an alcohol-free bar. What better way to get the best of both worlds?
The RSPB is encouraging people to swap the sofa for the outdoors this January. Rainham Marshes on the banks of the Thames in East London has a cycle scheme that allows you to loop the perimeter of the reserve and explore the surrounding area.
9 Get walking
A big, blustery walk isn’t just for Boxing Day. Get some fresh air on one of The Resident’s recommended scenic walks in London. It’s the perfect chance to also check out London’s zoos and famous historical sites. From Hampstead Heath to the Royal Parks, we’ve picked out some of the best places for walks in London.
10 Enjoy a social spa evening with friends
Agua Bathhouse & Spa in the Mondrian London at Sea Containers on the South Bank recently launched London’s first ever social spa evening. Inspired by the heritage and community spirit found in Roman spa culture, the new Spa Social at the Tom Dixon-designed Agua Bathhouse & Spa offers a relaxing, social evening for you to relax and unwind with friends after a stressful day at work. Taking place on the third Tuesday of every month, guests will be free to roam the modern bathhouse from 6.30pm-9pm for £65pp, which includes a mudpack, a 10-minute head, neck and shoulder massage, two glasses of Thomson & Scott Skinny Champagne per person (obviously you’ll be skipping those for the selection of herbal teas!) and a nourishing Sea Containers dinner bowl, to ensure you don’t go hungry. Find out more here.
11 Hang out at a boardgames cafe
Love playing boardgames but want to get out of the house? Your luck is in then, as London’s first boardgame café Draughts can give you just that. With over 500 games, you can waste the afternoon away with a healthy drink or some savoury snacks.
12 Try January at Pop Brixton
Instead of focusing on something you have to give up, Try January is all about learning something new and community-focused Pop Brixton, which reopens on 9 January with a schedule of alternative fitness classes. Try the new High Intensity Training class or an energetic Zumba session. Both launch on 10 January 2017 and continue weekly, every Tuesday, priced at £10 per one-hour session. There are also a range of fun alternative yoga classes – Curve Some Yoga is perfect for beginners, while Daddy, Mummy & Toddler Yoga offers fitness fun for all the family and Laughter Yoga is guaranteed to blast away the January Blues.
13 Go Ape in Battersea
Go Ape opened their first city experience in Battersea last year, away from the usual forest settings but with no fewer fun treetop adventures. With more than 40 different crossings including a 50 metre zip wire and another course for mini tarzans, it’s a brilliant outdoor activity for all the family. Prices start at £33 for adults and £18 for children. Enjoy!
It was only a matter of time before start-ups disrupted our gym routines. ClassPass, which gives flexible membership to a network of studios, is now to fitness what Uber is to travel and what Deliveroo is to dining. However, there can be something impersonal and utilitarian about working out with ClassPass. For those who prefer to work out locally, there’s a new app in town providing flexible fitness across studios in Fulham, Parsons Green and Wimbledon – including the likes of Pedal Studio in Wimbledon, and Bootcamp Pilates in Fulham. Find out more here.
15 Share on Sober London
Still need a bit of extra inspiration to get through? Then Sober London is the perfect starting point. Not only will it reassure you of the reasons why you’ve given up the Bloody Marys, but it also allows you to start a conversation and submit your own suggestions to the site. You’re not alone…